Coagulation-flocculation is used to remove helminth ova from wastewater intended for agricultural reuse. Nevertheless, it has the drawback of producing a large amount of sludge which together with the chemicals used to treat the wastewater increases the operating cost. This can be overcome by recovering and recycling the aluminium contained in the sludge. This paper presents how an acid recovery process was applied to an Advanced Primary Treatment (APT) sludge to partially treat it and to reduce its quantity. This is a method applied several decades ago in water sludge that has not been used in secondary wastewater sludge to recover aluminium and to inactivate microorganisms. By adding sulphuric acid to a 6%TS sludge, more than 70% of the aluminium added during the coagulation flocculation process was recovered when a pH of 2 was maintained during 30 minutes and at 300 rpm of mixing conditions. This way the sludge was reduced by 45% in volume and by 63% by mass, inactivating 5 logs of faecal coliforms and 68% of helminth ova. Due to the lower alum consumption, the operating cost of the APT is reduced by 3.78 US$/1,000 m3.
Alum recovery and wastewater sludge stabilization with sulfuric acid
B. Jiménez, M. Martínez, M. Vaca; Alum recovery and wastewater sludge stabilization with sulfuric acid. Water Sci Technol 1 October 2007; 56 (8): 133–141. doi: https://doi.org/10.2166/wst.2007.711
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